Norco Performance Bikes is a Canadian bicycle manufacturer based in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. The firm has been in operation since 1964 and was the first company in Canada to design and manufacture mountain bikes. In recent years, Norco has been quick to implement new innovations. In 1991, it became the first bicycle manufacturer to modify cycle geometry to include front suspension forks. As the success of that design change became apparent, other manufacturers quickly followed suit. This season, Norco has produced another fine range of mountain bikes. Here’s the lowdown on what the company has to offer.
Downhill and Gravity Series
- Team DH
- A-Line Park Edition
Bikes in the Norco Downhill and Gravity Series are designed to provide riders with speed and control over the roughest downhill or woodland terrains. These bikes have been manufactured using aluminium frames which come complete with flexible bottom bracket height and adjustable head tubes. Bikes in this range also make use of state of the art Horst 4-link suspension system.
Cycles in this series are aimed primarily at professional or highly-trained bikers who specialise in downhill racing, freeriding, shuttling or bike park riding. Riders have described bikes in the Downhill and Gravity Series as “extremely powerful” creations, well worth their hefty price tag.
- Shore 1
- Shore 2
- Shore 3
Norco’s range of freeride bikes has been manufactured to suit the needs of the world’s most hardcore bikers. Bikes in this series come complete with innovative Hydroformed aluminium frames which have been redesigned to ensure that they now have a lower centre of gravity. These bikes now not only feature Maxle rear dropouts but adjustments have also been made to head tube design. These changes mean that Norco’s Freeride bikes are able to perform admirably in even the most demanding conditions.
All Mountain Freeride Lite Series
- Six One
- Six Two
- Six Three
Bikes in this range are perfect for everything from back-country to freeride biking. Frames, although fairly lightweight, are extremely durable and cycles come with many of the features seen in Norco’s series of ‘Freeride’ bikes. Riders appear to be pleased with the Six One’s frame and geometry. However, a number of owners have voiced concerns about Norco’s choice of components for this bike. Users have noticed weaknesses in its front derailleur and do not appear to be satisfied with the bike’s use of Nevagal tyres.
Shore Hardtail Series
The Shore Hardtail Series has been designed to allow the avid hardtail rider to maximise speed and maneuvrability. As such, the bike comes with strengthened tubing and short chainstays which allow for rapid handling. The designer’s attention to detail in producing the Sasquatch is certainly appreciated by the majority of its riders. They appear to be particularly pleased with the bike’s aggressive geometry. However, a few have been less than happy with the Sasquatch’s derailleur and have described it as “weak.”
Dirt and Street Series
- 4 Hun
- 250 Dirt
If you’re a bike park junkie, then the bikes featured in Norco’s Dirt and Street Series will certainly meet your needs. For 2008, they come with specialised dirt jumping tyres and revamped frames. You’ll also find that yoke lengths have been shortened to allow for shorter chainstays. Owners appear to be fairly satisfied with the 4 Hun. They describe this bike as being “burly…strong” and “perfect” for aggressive dirt-jumping. However, a number of riders have been disappointed with the manufacturer’s choice of pedals.
All Mountain Long Travel Series
- Fluid LT 1
- Fluid LT 2
- Fluid LT 3
The bikes in this series display al the trademark qualities of a Norco mountain bike. They are strong and durable, yet sufficiently comfortable for long treks across rugged terrain. Norco’s staff left no stone unturned when testing the Fluid LT range. These bikes have had to deal with everything from the Swiss Alps to the Andes. The Fluid LT 3 is the most affordable of the three bikes in this series. Its features include a Marzocchi 55 R fork with 120-160 mm of travel and Avid Juicy hydraulic disc brakes.
All-Mountain XC Series
- Fluid One
- Fluid Two
- Fluid Three
The All Mountain XC Series has been designed to cater to the needs of riders who enjoy biking in a variety of different conditions. The Fluid bikes thrive on backcountry, cross-country and mountain trails. Riders have described the Norco Fluid One as a “great all-round mountain bike.” The bike climbs and descends well and is very durable. However, a few users have noted that the bike’s red exterior scratches very easily. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for something versatile, be sure to test ride this range!
XC Race FS Series
- Faze One
- Faze Two
- Faze Three
These bikes have been manufactured to deal with the demands of cross-country racing. They combine speed with a great suspension system which is designed to maximise forward momentum. Bikes in this range are also very lightweight due to Norco’s use of triple butted M6 aluminum tubing technology. According to its owners, the Faze One handles like a dream. Users also appear to be pleased with the designer’s choice of components and whilst these bikes are anything but cheap, users feel that they are well worth their price.
Adventure X Series
If you’re a novice mountain biker, you simply have to check out Norco’s Adventure X Series. Although the Rival and the Wolverine are the least expensive bikes in Norco’s 2008 range, this does not mean to say that the designers have compromised on quality. Frames are made from heavy-duty aluminium and disc brakes have been designed to deal with slippery conditions. Users describe the Rival as a great bike for beginners. However, a significant number have criticised its Marzocchi Dirt Jumper 3 fork.